Michael Vick: 10 Reasons Why He'll Never Recapture His Past Magic

Elliott PohnlFeatured ColumnistOctober 5, 2010

Michael Vick: 10 Reasons Why He'll Never Recapture His Past Magic

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    Michael Vick is one of the most talented athletes to ever play in the NFL, and arguably the most unique quarterback the league has ever seen.

    After dazzling during the better part of three games with the Eagles, Vick’s rib injury provided a loud reminder that his return to legendary status has yet to be realized.

    Now, the question becomes, will Vick ever completely recapture the magic that made him a polarizing face of the Falcons’ franchise?

    There are plenty of reasons to believe it will never happen.

    Here’s a look at 10 reasons why Michael Vick will never rediscover the magic of his younger days.

No. 10: Vick's Body of Work This Season Is Far from Complete

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    The Reigning NFC Offensive Player of the Month injected Philadelphia’s offense with life from the moment he replaced Kevin Kolb against the Packers.

    Vick’s ability to make plays with his legs has put defenses on high-alert.

    In the end, Vick’s greatest strength could be his undoing.

No. 9: Vick Still Isn’t a True Pocket Passer

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    No matter how many analysts trumpet Vick’s progression as a pass-first NFL quarterback, the fact remains he is still more comfortable making plays with his legs.

    The Eagles’ struggles on the offensive line have forced him to move around and manufacture plays, a skill that separates him from his peers.

    In the end, Vick’s longevity will depend on his ability to stay safely in the pocket.

No. 8: Stuck in Quarterback Limbo

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    Depending on how he looks once he returns to the field, the Eagles could open up the checkbook and give Vick a lucrative deal.

    Doing so would mean the franchise would be forced to move Kevin Kolb, who inked a fairly lucrative deal prior to the start of this season.

    The more reasonable possibility suggests Vick will look to go elsewhere to maximize his salary, probably to a less-stable organization than the Eagles'.

No. 7: The Lack of Consistency

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    Since Vick’s success in the two games he started—and finished—came against two of the NFL’s below-average defensive units, it's too early to tell if he has gotten over the consistency issues that plagued him during his days in Atlanta.

    Vick’s accuracy and decision-making was often hit-or-miss with the Falcons, hindering his progression towards becoming a complete NFL quarterback.

No. 6: Vick Won’t Get Completely Healthy Again This Season

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    Vick’s rib cartilage injury isn’t likely to heal completely unless he gets prolonged rest, making it more difficult to produce success on a consistent basis.

    In order to truly show what he can do, Vick will need to return to the field as early as possible.

    His ability to withstand pain will be tested, and the Eagles' struggling offensive line will be counted on to protect him.

    That could be easier said than done...

No. 5: The Eagles Offensive Line Is Unreliable

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    Since losing center Jamaal Jackson, the Eagles offensive line has struggled to protect the pocket and also open running lanes for LeSean McCoy.

    Overall, the pass-protection has been much worse than the run-blocking, which isn’t good news for Vick or Kevin Kolb.

    Unless the Eagles can show dramatic improvement up front in the coming weeks, Vick probably hasn’t taken his final huge hit of the season.

No. 4: Vick Can’t Play Forever

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    Based on his small sample size, Vick appears to have gotten better with age.

    At the same time, his age is one of the biggest reasons he will never completely rediscover his magical play-making abilities.

    Vick turned 30 in June, and a player his age with a run-first style is extremely vulnerable to injuries...

No. 3: Vick Already Has a Lengthy Injury History

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    Prior to his downfall in society, Vick’s performance on the field was suffering a drastic decline.

    Part of the problem was the Falcons’ inability to surround the face of the franchise with competent receivers.

    The other big problem was his bouts with injuries.

    Vick missed most of the 2003 season with a broken leg, and wasn’t healthy in 2005 or 2006 when he struggled to his worst NFL seasons and began to fall out of favor in Atlanta.

    Putting aside any belief that he will find trouble again off the field, there is plenty of evidence to believe difficulties on the field will be his undoing.

No. 2: Vick's Quest to Create a New Style Will Limit His Big Plays

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    Vick is clearly attempting to follow in the footsteps of former scramblers, including ex-Eagles Donovan McNabb and Randall Cunningham, and completely modify his style of play.  The legendary scrambler has made more of an effort to keep his eyes downfield when he is forced to take off, giving him the opportunity to make more big plays in the passing game.

    At the same time, Vick’s skills make him ideally suited to be a runner first and a passer second.  The Eagles were content to use him primarily as a runner last season, and likely would have done so again had Kolb not suffered a concussion in Week 1.

    Vick’s big arm is certainly an attractive asset, but he sprinted to fame because of what he could do with his legs.

    Becoming a pocket-passer might be the best way for Vick to stay in the league for years to come, but it won’t be the best way to further his legacy as one of the most exciting players to ever play in the NFL.

No. 1: Vick Can’t Run Forever

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    In the end, Michael Vick was a running quarterback and will always be a running quarterback.

    Although his style has changed a bit, he still has the ability to resort to running when plays unravel.  He also has the willingness to do whatever it takes to show he can make a difference at the NFL, and that means running whenever he needs to.

    Vick has already taken plenty of hits.

    Just how many more hits can his body take before his physical talents begin to erode?